Ruchill – Finn and other top dogs

Well hello again. Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis as well as dad’s marathon training have all meant that I’ve had a bit of an unplanned winter break from parkrun but I’m back!

Given the weather and the number of cancellations this weekend we decided it was safer to go for a local option this week. We opted for Ruchill, one of my favourites with its climbs, views and wide paths as well as its brilliant core team and volunteers.

It was a tough old shift getting up this morning after the wind and rain kept me and Maizie awake half the night. We had a bit of a street party about 1am when a few of the recycling bins in the street blew over and various folk were chasing cardboard, bottles and plastic down the street. Must be some sort of strange new training drills for humans.

After a very wet and windy start to the morning it was touch and go whether I was going to get to parkrun with mum trying to be sensible and dad, well, just being dad. As it happened the window between 9 and 10 ended up being the best bit of the day and I got the all-clear to go. The parkrun weather fairies really do exist.

We got there nice and early, said hello to Alison, Lynsey and birthday boy Finn as well as Piotr and Misha the dog then did a wee warm up, chasing sticks, avoiding fallen trees and seeing if we could brave the winds up at the flagpole before, of course, my traditional pre-run toilet stop.

Sorry I don’t have many Ruchill factoids for you. The best one I could find is that the flagpole has some of the best views of Glasgow and is set on an artificial mound built from 24,000 cartloads of spoil from the site of Ruchill Hospital. It is known locally as “Ben Whitton” after the park’s superintendent James Whitton who was responsible for the creation of the Park. Every day’s a school day.

Back to the start and we met a lot more of dad’s running friends including fellow parkrun tourist David S on the way to bag a new P Index score, David H, Paul C, Stewart H, Andy C, Jim McL and Laura McA.

Paul C thought I was called Columbo at first instead of Crumble. That made me chuckle. I’m sure I would make a top dog investigator. “Just one more thing”. Don’t give Jim any more blog ideas though…😉

There was a very respectable turnout of 75 given the conditions with a very healthy number of first-timers and a great Jiggly Joggers contingent. Core team member, RD and all-round good guy Finn got a double shout-out in the briefing. He was celebrating his birthday as well as his 100th parkrun. Many congratulations and happy birthday.

We started fast (probably too fast) and I wearied over the second and third laps. The wind certainly helped blow us up the big hill the first time though after that it felt like we were running into the wind the rest of the time though that clearly couldn’t have been the case.

I had a nice bit of competition with another dog in the first lap before it proved too strong for me and overtook me. Around the half way point though it had to stop for a toilet break. A schoolboy error. Or should I say a puppy error. Ever competitive, I wasn’t going to miss that window of opportunity. We overtook, put a bit of distance between us and tried our best to hang on. Whilst it closed the gap we managed to hang on to bag this week’s top dog spot. A rookie mistake by my rival. I’m sure it will know better next time.

It was by no means one of our fastest today but we still managed a respectable enough 26:16. We’ll blame dad and his 10 mile progression run yesterday and busy travel week!

Not content with celebrating his birthday and 100th parkrun Finn Boyd continued his great recent running form, coming home as first finisher in 19:00 on his 19th birthday. You couldn’t make that up. Well done Finn.

Lynsey and Alison were on timekeeping duties. Dad is on 55/60 on the parkrun stopwatch bingo challenge but they couldn’t manage to bump his time up or down to get one of his missing numbers. He needs 8, 12, 24, 29 and 35 for the record. Another week maybe!

It was lovely to get back out running today. I’ve barely even been walked the last week the weather’s been so poor.

Fingers crossed we get to our Leap Day parkrun next week. Your last chance to run a parkrun on 29 February for 28 years. Dunfermline, Girvan and Levengrove are all on the long list though the weather will probably be a factor.

Crumble out x

I’m back and ready for all weathers
Pre-run fetch
How am I supposed to play fetch with that?
Looking out over the west end from the flagpole
Pre-run briefing
Post run chill

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